Thanks to our friends at KISSMetrics, and a great Whiteboard Friday video over at Moz.com, the advice I’ve been giving clients has been substantiated outside my own testing. Turns out, that social sharing is not only a good thing and it’s not only necessary to promote your brand, but sharing more than once delivers quite a nice return.
When you write a new blog post, you probably put a lot of time and effort into your research and writing (if you don’t stop taking shortcuts and sabotaging yourself). The best posts, according to Matt Cutts at Google, are those which deliver on substance. Short articles don’t add real value to a site and are a waste of time. Longer posts–we know from Big G’s “In-Depth Articles” search returns–are worth more than one would first suppose.
Let’s put it another way, and think from a visitor’s point of view. The title may indicate or outright promise to provide information about a specific query, but if it does not, that’s a trick you want to stop using straight-away. Even if it does answer the question emphatically but doesn’t provide an explanation or real context, it’s just a let down for the reader.
Why Sharing More than Once Works
The answer to sharing the same article multiple times is obvious–you’re engaging a different audience in the majority of cases. Since it’s not likely that every one of your followers is on the exact same schedule and have identical interests, as well as being in the same industry, you’re sharing with a new audience each time. However, you still need to produce more than one article to be effective and to add value to your site.
Reposting the same content on social media can be quite a controversial topic. Some people don’t like it at all, while others advocate it strongly. For Buffer’s social media accounts, we regularly do this. We found this to work surprisingly well and thought it might be interesting to explore the topic in a more analytical way. [There] is some interesting data around republishing your content multiple times on social media. Simply looking at the latest social media stats, there seems to be good case for doing so. Some people also call this the “Guy Kawasaki”-technique for using Social Media. Looking at his massive following, it seems to be working well! —Belle Beth Cooper
This isn’t to say publish a new blog post three or four times a day (unless, of course, you’re in the news business). It’s to say that you ought to think about, plan, and execute a way to get more mileage out of each article you publish.
That’s where the tricky part comes in, especially when you consider that engagement times and publishing times are not the same. Research by TrackMaven has found that articles published on the weekends get more shares than those published during the week. The study also revealed that practically all shares happen well after the post goes live as most people are sharing between 9 p.m. and 12 a.m., with the span between 10 p.m. and 11 p.m. being the most active.
How to Share a Blog Article More than Once
Though you are sharing with a new audience on the first, even the second go-round, perhaps the third, don’t keep resharing identical content, that is to say, the same titles. Instead, replace the titles with a fact or stat in the post; or, ask a question.
You can also do a few other things to mix it up and get more out of the your articles than just a one-time social share, like:
- Make a comment about the post. Provide a little insight into what you did to put the information together or include a short anecdote to entice people who come across the subsequent share.
- Challenge your audience. For those who’ve not seen the article yet, this will be an open invitation; and, for those who have, an opportunity to add their own thoughts and experiences.
- Include contrary data. Share something contrary about what you wrote and link back to your post, which refutes the information.
- Insert an in-kind image, infographic, or mention a specific article. If you come across another piece of content that supports what you wrote, then share it, give the author credit, and link back to your own post.
By doing this, your blog posts will work for you in a way that delivers a bigger return over a longer period of time.